Buyers typically find a property online, then Google it to see if there are any power lines or busy roads nearby, then they will do a drive-by to check out the neighbours plus how your property looks from the road.
Your opportunity has finally arrived to make a positive first impression for buyers. Think about it from a buyer’s point of view; they have already short-listed your property from hundreds of others online, and now here they are at your door step!
Remember, we want your home to appeal to the broadest number of buyers possible – young families, investors, downsizers etc. The three most common items I suggest to sellers are: clean, declutter and let in natural light.
1. Clean, clean, clean
Sounds obvious right? Sometimes it’s easier to hire a professional cleaner for the first big clean, as there will be areas that probably don’t get done with your normal weekly clean, such as windows, fans, and skirting boards.
When you move, you’re going to pack everything into boxes anyway, so why not begin now? Buyers like to feel that a property has lots of space; anticipate that at an open home there may be multiple groups of people walking around your home, so I suggest arranging furniture to allow people to easily walk from room to room.
3. Bring in natural light
Light and bright is appealing for buyers. Where possible, open curtains and blinds, or turn on lights in the kitchen and bathrooms – these areas have reflective surfaces so the light is magnified. Some homes show better in the morning, others in the afternoon, depending on when the most light comes into the home.
4. Eliminate smells
Before inspection time, open your doors and windows to get as much fresh air into the house as possible. Musty or damp smells and pet odours are off putting for many people. Stick to more neutral smells; vanilla is always good. Don’t overdo it — strong fragrances can also be distracting.
5. Do minor repairs
We’re talking about handyman type repairs here, like fixing loose door handles, adjusting kitchen cupboards that don’t close, re-grouting tiles in the shower, new tap washers if required, or touching up paint that is flaking. When a home appears well maintained, buyers assume everything is in good condition, even things they can’t see.
6. Street appeal
Buyers often make up their mind whether or not they like a property before they even get to the front door. If people drive by your property, will they see a nice letter box with clear street numbers or a couple of dirty rubbish bins on the kerb? Front gardens, gutters and the roof are often the first things people notice.
Personally I prefer scones with raspberry jam and cream rather than strawberry. But check with your agent what they prefer. Don’t worry about the buyers, this tip is just to keep your agent happy 🙂